I deleted my personal Facebook account a long time ago. It’s such a TIME SUCK.
Is it really the best use of my time to take a quiz about which Overwatch character I am? Probably not (even though I’m sure I’m a Zenyatta).
Plus, the more I use Facebook, then the more data they collect on me which is kinda creepy.
…and this is important…
I always try to stay up on Facebook’s latest features. Because they want as MUCH of people’s time as possible, they’re constantly adding new features that will suck people in.
If you don’t stay up to date on these features, you lose your edge and your ad costs go up. Plus, new features usually means new rules. Don’t follow these rules and your ads may not get approved and your account can be banned.
The problem is that there’s so much news to keep up with.
To save you the hassle of reading through boring Facebook press releases, I’ve put together a list of their SIX most recent updates.
These are the ones you really need to know about.
#1 – New Rules For GDPR
Lately, I bet your email inbox has looked like this…
- Important updates to…
You get the point.
Why is this? It’s all about something big that’s happening in the European Union called “General Data Protection Regulation”.
The details are SUPER boring but also matter a lot. Basically, it boils down to this. If you live in the EU or sell to people in the EU, you have to get their EXPLICIT consent to collect any personal data.
- Private, professional or public life
- Home address
- Email address
- Posts on social networking websites
- Computer’s IP address
- And pretty much any other personal information
Here’s what this means for you:
If your ads are showing in the EU and you’re collecting any data, you need to be sure you’re telling people exactly what you’re doing.
If you’re sending people to a landing page that’s collecting data, tell them what you’re doing.
It’s really important to play by these rules. If you don’t, not only can you have your ads and account banned, you can also get into some serious legal trouble.
What kind of trouble? The kind where you pay huge fees. Like, go bankrupt kind of fees.
That would suck. Really, really bad.
Bottom line: Don’t be slim shady about how you collect people’s information.
Give it a few weeks to actually see how people are adapting to this. Right now everything’s speculation.
#2 – Partner Categories Are Out
Partner categories is an AMAZING targeting feature.
Obviously, Facebook knows a lot about you from observing your behavior, and what information you fill in your profile.
They also know a lot about your OFFLINE behavior as well such as the things people purchased, income, home size, job roles, and a bunch of other similar things.
Here’s a quick example:
My girlfriend likes to buy makeup at Sephora and signs up for their “loyalty” card for discounts. Sephora gives her email and information over to a 3rd party information broker.
That broker sells that information to Facebook. FB can match her data from Sephora to a user on the Facebook database.
Now advertisers can target her in different ways because they know people like her have bought beauty products before.
Totally awesome for a marketer.
Totally creepy for the rest of the world.
Bad News: Partner categories are going away.
Cambridge Analytica pulled an Oceans 11 heist on a bunch of data.
Now Facebook isn’t allowing you to create ads based on partner categories.
What does this mean for you? It’s more important than ever to use Facebook Audience Insights to understand the behavior of your audience.
Audience Insights lets you dive deep into who your audience is, what they like, what their interests are, and much more.
This is your golden ticket when it comes to creating ads.
When creating a new campaign, do the research beforehand. Yeah, you’re eager to launch. But launching without doing all the research kills your ad ROI.
You want it to be as targeted as possible.
#3 – Crackdown On Clickbait Ads
More and more, Facebook wants to clear your newsfeed of clickbait articles and ads.
This is because of all the talk of fake news and how Russia might have messed around with the U.S. election. Here’s one of the crazy ads that showed up before the election.
Anyway, Facebook wants to be sure that articles and ads are legit.
What does this mean for you?
Don’t use sensational, clickbait material for your ads. None of this crap:
If you’re using a clickbait style headline or your landing page doesn’t match your headline, you can get in trouble.
Either your ads will perform HORRIBLY…
…or get blocked altogether.
Clickbait ads are a waste of money.
So what should you do?
Use the best principles of copywriting. Don’t go over the top with your promises. Make sure your landing page lines up with your ad.
This is about common sense. Don’t be stupid or over the top with your ads.
#4 – Crackdown On Engagement Bait
You used to be able to improve the performance of an ad if you encouraged people to engage with it. You know…
- Tag someone who needs this!
- Comment if you love it!!
- Share this with all your friends!
No more. Facebook is bringing the hammer down on vote baiting, react baiting, and share baiting.
No more telling people to hit that “love” button if they are excited about a product. If you ask people to do that, the Facebook algorithm can detect it and either block your ad or cause it to perform poorly.
…you shouldn’t have to use cheap tricks like asking people to react to your ad.
You should be good enough at copywriting that people are genuinely interested.
#5 – A Free Sound Library
This is huge news if you make video ads.
And you should be doing video ads. Facebook is in love with video. Video keeps people on Facebook longer and they engage with it more.
Because Facebook loves video so much, they’re giving advertisers a big library of free sounds and songs.
This has two big advantages for you.
First, songs and sound effects can really improve the quality of your ad.
Second, you don’t need to worry about Facebook pulling your ad because you used a copyrighted Nickleback song. The last thing you want is your video going viral and then getting pulled because of the music. Now that won’t happen.
With this huge library of songs and sound effects, you can seriously up the quality of your video ads. It’s another reason to start doing video ads right now.
#6 – Live Video Is Big
Facebook has a serious crush on live video.
(Thanks for the idea Periscope!)
If uploaded video is Facebook’s first crush, Facebook Live is their soul mate.
Why do they love live video so much?
It gets more engagement. In other words, people spend more time on the site.
The good news is that you can use Facebook Live for your ads.
It’s really simple.
Do a live video from your Facebook page. Then boost it to a targeted audience.
The more engagement it gets, the more it will bubble up in the feeds.
If you want engagement, BE INTERESTING. If you’re boring, people will stop watching.
Get creative with your live videos.
If you’re a 23-year-old skinny nerd, it’s going to be pretty tough to promote a waist trainer.
But if your page is big enough and the campaign has potential, you can hire someone to be in the video.
Think about your favorite TV shows. Why do you watch them? Because they keep your attention.
When creating a video, think of ways you can keep people’s attention.
Conclusion: Use Your Creativity
Each of these updates requires you to get creative with your ads.
You need to let people know if you’re collecting personal information, but you can do it in a way that doesn’t freak them out.
You can’t be clickbaity, but you can use your copywriting superpowers to draw people in.
And with live video, you get to be the director of your own commercial.
You should be using creativity with your ads anyway. This just forces you to.
And that’s a good thing.
Was this post helpful? Let me know if the comments if you want more posts like this in the future.
Featured Image by Makc76